Sunday, August 5, 2007

Group SMS,Multi person sms for web 2.0 and mobile 2.0

Group SMS or multiperson SMS is nothing but sending SMS messages to a group of people or contacts. This can be accomplished through web or a mobile. There are so many startups out there providing such services for free.
Here is my take on some of the services. I strongly believe that in the future, these services will be provided free of cost with advertisements inserted. I don’t know if iam thinking aloud. Infact, we have great leader in this category GOOGLE, which provides most of the service free with advertisements.
I’ve spent some time looking at some of the promising ones. Here is the list below. ( i have not included dodgleball,loopt,jaiku though they support group sms. I feel they fall under location based social networking category. Will come up with that list later)

Web based/Based free voice and sms messaging service. It could be used to send mass text and voice message. Once registered, user can create a group from the web and start sending messages to the group members. I like the web interface which has lot of features. This gives users an option of using the web interface when he is using his computer. However, the downside of this product is the verification process of the friends we add as contacts. It’s not a smooth ride for the users who are added as contacts. I think email verification or sms should be good strategy than using voice activated confirmation. I don’t know how jyngle is going to handle mobile not available due to signal issues, which happens most of the time with many operators. Not sure what is the logistics behind such verification process.
I tried to send a voice message, but the recording of the message took a very long time. (Not sure if it was signal issue). Also, the message notification was very slow,
from the web I could see the message sent as 11.49 am, I actually received the message
12.20 pm. Voice message retrieval is also not straight forward, you have to write down the number and the message id to receive the message. Looks like there are some issues to be sorted out.
Registration and usage is free

One of my favorite group sms products. You can create a group using your handset by sending sms commands. Personally i hate typing so many commands on the handset screen.
I guess over time people get used to the commands. It’s like any other service. As long as the user loves the service, I don’t think typing commands should be an issue here.At the cost of a little, you get such a lovely feature that allows you to be in the zone with your friends.
Registration and usage is free

I guess this is the most popular sms messaging communication available today in the market. Off course, pownce is going to give them some sleepless nights. My take is regardless of the number of competitors, the best product will always win the market.
I guess dodge ball was the one which started the trend and then lot of other followers came by with different offerings. There is so much written about twitter on the web.

It looks to me like pownce is a mashup of twitter, IM, file sharing and event notification. I like the idea of integrating IM to the web. Pownce is going to be a strong competitor to Twitter and Jaiku. It has all the niche features required for messaging over web interface without downloading a desktop client. Its file sharing is pretty cool; using this feature one could send files to one person or a group of people. Its worthy of note that it has been started by Kevin Rose (Digg).

Joopz has a very slick web interface. I would call this service as web sms broadcast to friends and family. You can create contacts and groups from your web interface.
Once the groups and contacts are established, it’s just a click away to send sms messages to all the members of the group or an individual contact.

Pretty similar to joopz, but it has additional groups called communities. I liked the messaging user interface. It has options to send messages to friends, groups and communities. Looks like zemble believes in free sms. This is indeed good news to the users. My gut feeling is that zemble is going to make money through advertisements.

It’s more like a dodge ball kind of service. Location, connection and friends in the zone kind of feature. It has private and public profiles. Didn’t quite get why u need email feature on the handset to activate the account. They could do that using a sms message sent to the groovr short code. So to me this service is only for blue collar guys with a PDA and good data package, who send and receive their emails using the mobile phones.

Mozeo has cool web interface using which u can create TxtCasts and groups. You can invite your friends by email or mobile phone. Somehow i feel inviting friends through their email is a better option than mobile, because of the sms charges they have to incur for the invitation. You can subscribe to other members TxtCasts and receive updates about the same. Unless you have a very big community with varied interest, not sure how you can get the users hooked up with the service

It’s a complete mobile social networking. It is more than sending and receiving SMS messages. It’s a complete package focused more on social networking. Though its not a pure sms product, iam adding it here since the same can be used for lot of different purpose. User can create groups or join the existing groups and start sending peeks.

Moblabber supports text messaging from web and mobile. Users could share ideas, create groups, broadcast messages to the entire group using the web or mobile.
They have a bunch of commands that can be used to send and receive text messages from
mobile handset. You will be charged $0.30 cents for every message received from moblobber. I don’t understand why users would join the community and pay for service when there are so many other products available for free of cost. Having said that, maybe,the service is so compelling that users see a value and are willing to pay. Well, how else can the company survive?

It’s a mobile group messaging that supports multichannel (web, sms, im) communication.
They have a web interface using which users can send sms, im message to the swarms.
Users can create their own swarms and start messaging each other.
Ok finally the hard one, you need to buy sms credits in order to send sms message to the swarm. For $9.95, you get 100 credits.

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